1. Professor Petr Iablonskii is awarded the title of Honorary Citizen of St Petersburg
  2. The award named after Professor Vataniar Yagya is established
  3. St Petersburg University staff receiving the Prizes of the Government of St Petersburg
  4. St Petersburg University scientists in ‘The New Knowledge’ marathon
  5. ‘The Architecture of the Siege’ – the best documentary
  6. The use of digital portfolio in the system of general education
  7. The events within the framework of the Korea–Russia Dialogue
  8. St Petersburg University Agreement with Iranian partners
  9. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  10. The enquiry from a student of St Petersburg University
  11. The hybrid format of the graduation ceremonies
  12. The ‘Priority-2030’ programme
  13. Applications of the competition participants seeking academic and teaching staff positions
  14. The disappearance of a student

1.           Professor Petr Iablonskii is awarded the title of Honorary Citizen of St Petersburg     

The deputies of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg have elected Professor Petr Iablonskii, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at St Petersburg University, the Honorary Citizen of St Petersburg in 2021. The grand ceremony of granting the decoration of an Honorary Citizen took place on 27 May on the Day of the City (The Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of St Petersburg University is awarded the title of Honorary Citizen of St Petersburg).

The colleagues congratulated Professor Petr Iablonskii on receiving the honorary title. Nikolay Kropachev said: ‘Petr Iablonskii together with his colleagues at the Faculty have always helped the University staff.  During the pandemic this help has been of special importance.  Now I see the participants of the meeting on the computer screen and you have provided help to nearly all of them during this difficult year including their relatives, colleagues from other faculties and institutes, divisions, offices and services. When going through the sickness at home or at a medical institution, almost all University staff and sometimes even their relatives were under the vigilant supervision of Petr Iablonskii, Yury Fedotov, Sergei Shcherbak, Viktor Kashchenko, Andrei Obrezan, Valerii Strizheletskii and their colleagues. I know from personal experience that when the pandemic came to my home, it was you, Sergei Shcherbak, Andrei Obrezan and your other colleagues that helped us to go through it. With the continuation of the pandemic, the pain adaptation effect has manifested, and the work of our doctors in hazardous conditions has started to be taken for granted. However, this is not a matter-of-course, but a heroic deed! We are grateful and obliged to the University medical staff for our life and health!’

2.  The award named after Professor Vataniar Yagya is established

On 26 May, the draft of the Legislative Assembly decree ‘On establishing the award of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg named after Professor Vataniar Yagya’ was approved. A prominent scholar of Asian and African studies Vataniar Yagya was one of the founders of the Faculty of International Relations at St Petersburg University, long-standing Head of the Department of World Politics, Deputy of the Leningrad City Council of People’s Deputies, Deputy of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg of the 1st–4th Convocations, Plenipotentiary of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg on International Relations of the 2nd–4th Convocations, and Plenipotentiary of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg on International Relations of the 5th– 6th Convocations. 

The award will be granted on an annual basis starting from 2022. The first version of the decree stated that the Rector's office will select three best students of International Relations every year. Nikolay Kropachev suggested that the basis of selecting the best students should be changed. Faction of the Party ‘United Russia’ supported the proposal. Currently, the best students will be selected on the basis of the contest named after Professor Vataniar Yagya for the research and development work on ‘The World Politics and Current Issues in Global Development’. The students of any field and speciality will be able to take part in the contest. The amount of the award is 50,000 roubles.

3.           St Petersburg University staff receiving the Prizes of the Government of St Petersburg

On 27 May, St Petersburg Governor Alexander Beglov presented the laureates with the St Petersburg Government Prize for Outstanding Achievements in the field of science and technology (20) and in the field of university and secondary vocational education (46) (St Petersburg University scientists receive the St Petersburg Government Prizes).  Six academic staff members of St Petersburg University were among the laureates.

  • in the ‘Chemical Sciences’ nomination, the Dmitri Mendeleev Prize was given to Professor Sergey Tunik,
  • in the ‘Physiology and Medicine’ nomination, the Ivan Pavlov Prize was given to Professor Tatiana Chernigovskaya,
  • in ‘Biological Sciences’ nomination, the Nikolai Vavilov Prize was given to Professor Elena Ermilova,
  • in the ‘Natural and Technical Sciences’ nomination, the Leonhard Euler Prize was given to Research Associate Stanislav Bondarev (one of the six young scientists),
  • in the ‘Development of Innovative Activity in an Educational Organisation’ nomination, the Prize was given to Professor Tatiana Golubeva,
  • in the ‘Teaching and Methodological Support of the Academic Process Aimed at Increasing the Quality of Training’ was given to Associate Professor Apollinariia Avrutina.

4.  St Petersburg University scientists in ‘The New Knowledge’ marathon

On 20–22 May, Inter-regional public organisation ‘Society “Znanie” of St Petersburg and Leningrad region’ held an all-Russia educational marathon ‘The New Knowledge’. Two representatives of St Petersburg University took part in the event: Director of the Institute for Cognitive Studies Tatiana Chernigovskaya and Associate Professor in the Department of Cytology and Histology Kirill Antonets. The lecture by Tatiana Chernigovskaya ‘Education in the 20th century from the cognitive science perspective’ was broadcast live from the Moscow studio of the marathon.

The marathon goal is to demonstrate the achievements of Russia in various fields.  The participants had an opportunity to meet prominent figures from the field of state government, culture and art, science, business, and sport. The programme of the event featured over 100 discussions, lectures, interviews, public classes, and workshops. The marathon took place in eight cities of Russia: Moscow, St Petersburg, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Sochi, Vladivostok, Novosibirsk and Kaliningrad. All events were broadcast on the website of the Society ‘Znanie’. The photobank and recordings of live broadcasts of all the key events on the marathon platforms are also featured on the website.

5.  ‘The Architecture of the Siege’ – the best documentary

‘The Architecture of the Siege’ film created by the University students and staff was distinguished as the best documentary at the First Open Patriotic Film Festival ‘Malaya Zemlya’ in Novorossiysk.

The film was released in 2020 within the framework of the ‘Preserved Culture’ project.  The documentary talks about the specialists that helped to protect architectural monuments during the Siege of Leningrad: architects, engineers, museum workers, artists, mountain climbers and other specialists that worked on camouflaging the buildings. 

Several teachers and alumni of St Petersburg University took part in the creation of the film.  The film creator and producer is Viktor Naumov, Associate Professor in the Department of Information Systems in Economics at St Petersburg University, lecturer at the Department of State and Administrative Law, Managing Partner at St Petersburg Office of Dentons international law company. One of the film protagonists is his grandfather, Aleksandr Naumov, a renowned architect and city developer. He was Deputy Chief Architect of Leningrad during the Siege managing the concealment of buildings. Russian architects, brothers Nikita Yaveyn and Oleg Yaveyn, the sons of prominent Soviet architect Igor Yaveyn, whose life is also reflected in the documentary, also took part in the creation of the film. 

The following people also worked on the film: Nikita Lomagin, Doctor of History, Professor in the Department of World Economy at St Petersburg University; Viacheslav Mosunov, a St Petersburg University alumnus, military historian, Research Associate at the Military Historical Museum of Artillery; Aleksandr Leontev, an architect, Senior Deputy Chairman of the Committee for the State Preservation of Historical and Cultural Monuments in St Petersburg; Iuliia Bakhareva, a St Petersburg University alumnus, art historian, Head of the Department on Systematisation, Popularisation and Storage of Documented Information on the Cultural Heritage Sites at the Committee for the State Preservation of Historical and Cultural Monuments in St Petersburg; Mikhail Bobrov, a prominent mountain climber involved in camouflaging the buildings in Leningrad during the Siege, sport teacher, the oldest North Pole conqueror, honorary citizen of St Petersburg; Grigory Yastrebenetsky, a renowned Soviet and Russian sculptor, People’s Artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, resident of Leningrad under the Siege, war veteran, author of multiple war memorials; and other prominent specialists, researchers and contemporaries of the war epoch. The author and director of the film is Maksim Iakubson (The official website of the Administration and State Duma of the municipal formation of the Hero City Novorossiysk: The First Open Patriotic Film Festival ‘Malaya Zemlya’ is over in Novorossiysk).

The film received a number of other awards including: ‘Silver Mark’ of the Union of Architects of Russia; special prize of the jury ‘For historical memory preservation’ at the 25th International Festival ‘Radonezh’ in Moscow; the highest gratitude from the Head of the Russian Imperial House; and a diploma of the Patriarchal Council for Culture. 

6.  The use of digital portfolio in the system of general education

On 21 May, an extended session of the Federal Service for Supervision in Education and Science (Rosobrnadzor) on ‘Introducing digital portfolio as a means of recording student’s personal achievements in class and extra-curricular activity’.  During the session, the representatives of federal and regional executive authorities and expert community talked about the experience in developing similar systems that could be considered by the universities also during the selection of applicants.

During the meeting, Rector Nikolay Kropachev shared the experience of the University in integrating digital portfolios from the enrolment to St Petersburg University to graduation. The Rector encouraged the colleagues not to worry about the concerns related to the lack of federal legal basis for such issues. The current legislation does not prescribe the use of electronic portfolio. However, it also does not prohibit introducing digital portfolio instruments. The Rector reminded that back in 1996 the University created an electronic law library, although at that time there were no federal norms regulating the work with personal data of the library users. Then, the Dean of the Faculty had introduced the so-called faculty rules of working with personal data before any federal regulation was established (Publishing Group ‘Zakon’: ‘Thus, the right for 100 justifies the right for 5’ // the Faculty of Law at St Petersburg University gives open access to prerevolutionary research). According to another example, human blood sequencing, organising the storage of research results in the Biobank and using the results in R&D activity required the creation of legal regulations for conducting all these types of work.  Gaps in the federal law were filled in by local normative acts of the University. The issue of these normative acts enabled our scientists to start active research, while strictly observing the rights and legal interests of citizens

(Order No 8025/1 dated 3 August 2017 ‘On access to donors’ genetic data’; Order No 4277/1 dated 24 April 2019 ‘On approving the form of informed voluntary consent to the collection, examination and storage of biological material samples’; St Petersburg University expert: personal genetic information can become a reason for discrimination). As soon as the relevant federal normative legal acts were issued, the University introduced all the required changes into its by-laws.

It was emphasised that the electronic portfolio matters not only for students, but also for graduates.  The Rector gave an example, when the University graduate publicly accused a St Petersburg University lecturer in social networks of improper behaviour towards her. This issue was considered by the University Ethics Committee that found no violations in the lecturer’s actions and declared the student's behaviour as inconsistent with the University Student and Staff Code of Conduct. The information on the relevant decision of the Ethics Committee was included into the electronic portfolio of this graduate and now any potential employer can view this information through the QR-code on the diploma.

When discussing the digital portfolio accessibility, it was also underscored that the technical (software) mechanism of protecting personal data is also being developed. Thus, for example, St Petersburg University is working on introducing blockchain technology that should be completed by 1 October 2021.

The Head of Rosobrnadzor Anzor Murzaev said that digital portfolios have become our reality and it is not by chance that the meeting takes place at the University. St Petersburg University is the only university in the country that has been so successful in using digital portfolios when assessing the progress of students and teachers. That being said, many educational establishments, subjects of the Russian Federation and municipal districts work on introducing the digital portfolio system.

‘I think it would be a big mistake to watch this process without doing anything. The whole world is working on this issue now. It is not fair that significant achievements of students are not being considered just because they fall outside the Unified State Examination’, said the Head of Rosobrnadzor.

According to him, school students, university students and graduates are themselves interested in creating digital portfolios so that their achievements can be accounted for by the university and the employer. It is important that the data shall not be collected for the sake of data, underscored Anzor Murzaev: ‘There should be no piles of completely unnecessary certificates, often fake ones, that are of no use to anyone. If we have collected something, it should be taken into account later on when giving points, bonuses or other incentives.’

St Petersburg University is the founder of the digital portfolio project for students. Digital portfolios have been successfully used at the University since 2015. In 2016, QR-codes first appeared on St Petersburg University diplomas, which enables the employers to learn about the achievements of the graduates through their personal accounts. The digital portfolio data of the applicants are considered during the selection process at all levels (general education, vocational education, bachelor's, specialist’s, master's, aspirantura and medical residency programmes). The digital portfolio data is taken into account when taking the decision to provide an advanced state academic scholarship, personal scholarships, grants, vouchers for holiday houses and many other decisions. The Ministry of Education of Russia has confirmed the importance of digital portfolio. Starting from this year, the certificates of basic and complete general secondary education as well as St Petersburg University diplomas will include a data matrix code.

‘Due to the QR-code in the St Petersburg University diploma, any employer will be able to enter the graduate's personal account and see all the achievements including participation in the Student Council activities, volunteer work, grades, and internships. The employer will also be able to read the graduation project of the candidate and the relevant review. We have reached the point when the employers assess our graduates based on the large aggregation of information that we can provide,’ underscored Nikolay Kropachev.  

The Rosobrnadzor Head and the Rector pointed out that a broader introduction of digital portfolio in the schools of Russia with time may lead to a gradual substitution of the Unified State Examination with a digital portfolio.

At St Petersburg University, the nearest step in this direction is the emergence of a digital portfolio at the Academic Gymnasium named after D.K. Faddeev (Academic Gymnasium named after D.K. Faddeev of St Petersburg University is the first Russian school to introduce digital portfolio for all its students). The system to be gradually launched already in three months will enable the parents and teachers to track all changes in the student’s portfolio. The blockchain technology will help in preventing any attempts to falsify the data and in limiting access to the information for strangers. The University is ready to share its best practices in this field with other organisations and help with the system integration. 

‘The Academic Gymnasium named after D.K. Faddeev of St Petersburg University will become the first Russian school to transition fully to the student’s digital portfolio system,’ told Aleksandr Babich, Vice-Rector for Student Affairs and Admissions. ‘It will help to accumulate information on the progress, achievements in academic and research activity, extra-curriculum achievements as well as the results of participation in Olympiads and competitions.’ Despite the fact that the admission to our University is still performed on the basis of the Unified State Examination, we still pay special attention to the individual achievements of the applicants that often play the decisive role in competing cases (‘Digital Portfolio’ Presentation).

Elena Kazakova, Director of the Institute of Pedagogy, research supervisor of the ‘Digital platform for personalised education at school’ programme by PJSC ‘Sberbank’, Doctor of Pedagogy, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, expressed her absolute satisfaction with the use of digital portfolio at the University considering it a tool of ‘fair, reasonable and humanistic orientation.’ 

‘Modern reality is forever merged with the digital one. This is the world we live in now. Here the person becomes the key figure including his or her subjective position, personality, activity, inclusion into life and understanding of the rules. We don’t teach children, but they learn themselves.  As they grow up, school students begin to understand their personal responsibility for their steps in education. They themselves form their digital portfolio as a combination of achievements. It will also become a signal for thinking over their life path and the choice of education. At the same time, we can’t immediately introduce digital portfolio in the entire country.

It is possible only if the teachers understand the process through which children acquire their culture,’ considers Elena Kazakova.

Tatiana Chernigovskaya, Director of the Institute for Cognitive Studies, Doctor of Biology, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Education, is also convinced that training the teachers, who are often not ready to use all the digital possibilities of the modern world, is of major importance. ‘The digital portfolio can show the parent, teacher and children themselves how everything is going. This is significant help that we should not miss out’, she said. 

7.  The events within the framework of the Korea–Russia Dialogue

On 21 May, a workshop of the specialists from the working group on ‘Economy, Trade and Resources’ took place. The topic of the meeting was ‘The Plan of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the sphere of clean energy and online platforms’. Opening remarks were made by: Nikolay Kropachev and Lee Kyu Hyung, Chairpersons of the Korea–Russia Dialogue (KRD) Coordinating Committees; Kwon Tae-shin, authorised Deputy Chair of the National Federation of Entrepreneurs of the Republic of Korea; and Kwon Dong Seok, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in St Petersburg (Clean energy and the development of online platforms: the KRD holds a meeting of the working group on ‘Economy, Trade and Resources’).

The current issues of modern society – digitalisation and ecology – were considered during the event. The experts from Russia and the Republic of Korea made presentations demonstrating the situation in each of the countries. Kwon Tae-shin, authorised Deputy Chair of the National Federation of Entrepreneurs of the Republic of Korea, noted that our countries should significantly expand the horizons of partnership up to the spheres of innovations and healthcare that are considered prospective in the epoch of energy transformation.

The first session was devoted to cooperation in the sphere of green energy. Sergey Andryushin,

Deputy Rector for International Affairs, and Chae Wook, Director of the working group on

‘Economy, Trade and Resources’ acted as the session moderators on the Russian and on the Korean side, respectively. During the first session, Vladimir Voronov, Associate Professor of ITMO University, made a presentation titled ‘The heavy burden of light hydrogen’; Yang Euyseok, Senior Researcher at Korea Energy Economics Institute, talked about the possibilities of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the sphere of hydrogen energy; Aleksandr Solovianov, Research Director at VNII Ecology Research Institute, talked about ‘The role of renewable energy sources in achieving the goals of sustainable development’.

The second part of the workshop was devoted to the issues of Korea–Russia cooperation in the sphere of online platforms development. It was moderated by Elena Sokolovskaia, Associate Professor and Leading Research Associate at the Laboratory of Asian Economic Studies at St Petersburg University. During the time of the fourth industrial revolution, online platforms impact market development giving rise to new business management models that decrease costs, while increasing performance. During the coronavirus pandemic the role of online platforms has significantly increased both at the domestic and at the international level.

The presentations were made by Park Jiwon, Research Associate of the Korea Trade-Investment

Promotion Agency (KOTRA); Sergei Belozerov, Professor at St Petersburg University; Elena

Sokolovskaia, Associate Professor at St Petersburg University; Maria Tsenzharik, Associate Professor at St Petersburg University; Lee Sungwoo, Director of the Korea Maritime Institute; Vera Vishniakova, Associate Professor at the Higher School of Economics.

A general discussion was held after each of the two sessions. The issues of hydrogen energy and its production and environmental safety as well as gas supply to the Republic of Korea were discussed.  The issues related to fintech were also considered. The participants noted the key objective of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the fintech market should be the improvement of conditions for its development. The conditions should provide for the creation and commercialisation of competitive financial products.  The challenges of the fourth industrial revolution should be taken into account as well as the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. These factors have changed the nature of production, distribution and consumption in the economy. It can be achieved by means of strategic partnership, particularly, within the framework of implementing the two initiatives: the Giga-KOREAProject, which is a general plan of developing an intelligent information society; and the 'Digital Economy in the Russian Federation' national programme, which is a strategy of developing an information society in the Russian Federation during 2017–2030. There has emerged a need to create platforms allowing for work in all segments of the business analysis.

Apart from the speakers and discussants, the event was attended by guests from various universities of the country. Some participants exchanged contact information to continue the dialogue.

On 28 May, the Forum of Rectors of the leading universities of Russia and the Republic of Korea was held. The opening remarks were made by: Nikolay Kropachev and Lee Kyu Hyung,

Chairpersons of the KRD Coordinating Committees; Anatoly Nikolaev, Rector of the NorthEastern Federal University in Yakutsk; Kim In Chul, President of Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Chair of the Korean Council for University Education; Andrey Kulik, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of Korea; and Lee Sok Bae, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Russian Federation.

Two sessions were held during the forum: a plenary session and a practical session. The plenary session was attended by the rectors and vice rectors from 18 Russian universities and organisations as well as from 10 Korean universities. The topic was declared as ‘The Tasks of university education in the coronavirus epoch’ (Rector of St Petersburg University speaks at the 8th Forum of Rectors of the leading universities of Russia and the Republic of Korea).

The participants shared their achievements.

A practical session was held for the first time in a closed format at the Forum of Rectors. The session was devoted to ‘The Plan of bilateral cooperation in the sphere of medicine and education in the post-COVID period’. Ten specialists in the sphere of medicine, vaccination and immunology on each side took part in the event. In particular, specialists that took part in the development of such vaccines as ‘Sputnik V’, ‘EpiVacCorona’, ‘CoviVac’ made presentations on the Russian side.  The session was followed by a fruitful discussion.

Following the Forum of Rectors, Northern (Arctic) Federal University was offered to hold a special session on 1 October on ‘The Russia–Korea research projects: implementation prospects’.  It is anticipated that the special session will be divided into four subgroups:

  • Cellular technology and metagenomics research
  • Studies of the climatic ecosystem in the northern regions
  • Arctic Studies
  • Altai Studies

Moreover, it was proposed to hold 1 to 2 sessions to continue joint work of the practical session participants in the near future.

The 9th Forum of Rectors will be hosted by Korea University.

8.  St Petersburg University Agreement with Iranian partners

On 26 May, the ceremony of signing the agreement between St Petersburg University and its Iranian partners took place. The agreement was signed by: Nikolay Kropachev, Rector of St Petersburg University; Professor Mahmoud Nili, President of the University of Tehran; and Mehdi

Sanaei, CEO of the Institute for Iran-Eurasia Studies, ex-Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the Russian Federation and St Petersburg University Professor. The agreement provides for the opening of a representative office of St Petersburg University at the University of Tehran and a representative office of the University of Tehran at St Petersburg University as well as the creation of the encyclopaedia on Iranian studies (St Petersburg University strengthens relations with the University of Tehran). 

A representative office of St Petersburg University is not a legal entity, but a project with the goal to: promote academic and research projects; develop export potential of Russian education; and popularise the Russian language and culture abroad. Currently, the project is being implemented in the Republic of Korea, the People’s Republic of China, Spain, Italy, the USA, and Greece. The main fields of activity of the representative office include: organising joint R&D and educational projects; holding scientific conferences, workshops, public lectures by famous Russian scientists and public figures as well as organising cultural events; promoting the Russian language, history and culture; organising thematic summer schools; creating the Russian Language Centre; holding Olympiads on Russian as a foreign language for international students and school children; holding video bridges for students and researchers; and holding open days at St Petersburg University with the goal to inform international students and scientists about academic programmes, prospective research and cultural events taking place at the University.

St Petersburg University and the Institute for Iran-Eurasia Studies also concluded an agreement on creating an encyclopaedia on Iranian studies. This joint project of the Institute for Iran-Eurasia Studies, St Petersburg University and the Institute for Humanities and Cultural Studies under the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology of Iran. It is aimed at creating a reliable and constantly renewable popular science source on Iran with a complete and vibrant image of Iran in the Russian language available for the Russian audience at any location of the world.

9.  Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process

During the past period, the Virtual Reception received 68 enquiries from students and teachers including 26 enquiries on educational and methodological issues addressed to the Senior ViceRector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods. 51 enquiries were sent to the e-mail of the Vice-Rector.

The enquiries were on various topics: student transfer and reinstatement procedures; receiving status certificates and teaching methodology documentation; the format of graduation ceremony in 2021; the timeframe of uploading the reviews of graduation projects into the Blackboard system; the schedule of the interim  assessment; the format of the teaching and learning  process;  using the system of online invigilating; tuition fees; the possibility to get a St Petersburg University diploma with honours; giving the opportunity to resit an online course test; the procedure of holding a test administered by the assessment board; keeping the educational format with the use of information and communication technologies; and the ‘fail’ grade in the electronic student record book. All the enquiries are being addressed by the specialists of various services of the University.

The most urgent issues are addressed in detail. For example, a parent of a Psychology student addressed the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods. According to the claimant, learning with the use of information and communication technologies without direct communication with the teacher cannot replace the knowledge that students could get in person in the classroom.

A response was forwarded that currently St Petersburg University students enrolled in fulltime studies continue their academic programmes in person in the classroom. Taking into account the need of the teaching and learning process organisation to provide for the observation of Recommendations for the prevention of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in educational institutions of higher education dated 29 July 2020 approved by the Chief State Sanitary Doctor of the Russian Federation, starting from 1 September 2020 academic classes at the University are held in a hybrid mode combining traditional in person classes, remote classes with the use of information and communication technologies and hybrid format. Based on the proposals of the Dean of the Faculty of Psychology, the academic disciplines in the field of ‘Psychology’ in the spring term of 2020/21 are held entirely with the use of information and communication technologies. Current information on the format of holding classes is published in the Electronic Timetable.

A graduate student of aspirantura inquired about the approved timetable for interim assessment for the first year of the aspirantura programme in the field of ‘Philology’. The claimant inquired when the approved timetable will be available. Should it be considered that the date of the examination will be transferred if the timetable does not appear on the examination day and the graduate students have not been forwarded any notifications? 

The response was given that in accordance with the Academic Regulations on the university programmes  — the programme of training research and academic staff in aspirantura and medical residency programmes, implemented at St Petersburg University by Order No 8577/1 dated 30 August 2018 (with further changes and additions), then — Academic Regulations, the interim  assessment timetable and the academic failure settlement timetable are compiled and approved by the Deputy Head of the Academic Affairs Department and communicated to the graduate students, medical residents and teachers by means of publishing on the University portal. The interim assessment timetable in the group of the claimant is approved by Order No 2003/1 dated 21 May 2021 of the Deputy Head of the Academic Affairs Department in the fields of Asian and African studies, art and philology and timely published on the portal in the Electronic Timetable. The interim assessment is scheduled starting from 7 June 2021.

A bachelor's student in ‘Petroleum Engineering’ sent an enquiry following the results of the test in ‘Lithology’ administered by the assessment board. According to the student, the teachers violated the assessment methodology and the procedure of holding the interim tests. During the investigation, the assessment board members gave well-argued explanations confirming compliance with the assessment methodology when evaluating the student’s work according to the ‘Lithology’ discipline curriculum. The position of the board members was considered wellreasoned.  Based on the results of the investigation, no procedural violations were found.

On 28 April 2021, seven master’s students in ‘Law’ sent an enquiry following the results of the test in an elective course of ‘Practical Classes in Commercial Procedure’ administered by the assessment board. This was mentioned in the Minutes of the Rector’s meeting dated 11 May 2021. In a timely manner, the students received answers to their applications providing detail argumentation that the assessment procedure fully complied with the methodology based on the explanations of the teachers and on the results of the investigation checking the compliance with all the procedures.

On 21 May, the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods received an e-mail from master’s programme students in ‘Philosophy’ stating that they had received a letter from an academic office specialist in the field of ‘Philosophy’ with a request to resit the test in the online course on the ‘Theory and Practice of Countering Corrupt Behaviour and Manifestations of Extremism’ (hereinafter referred to as online course) in view of a ‘technical failure’. The students considered the time frame of publishing the timetable for test resitting. This time frame is specified by the Academic Regulations for all full-time bachelor’s, specialist’s and master’s programmes as well as vocational training programmes at St Petersburg University.

Following the results of the inspection, no violations of timetable compilations were found. The academic office specialist sent the request to the students by mistake, since as of 21 May 2021 no results of the online course test were received, while some students communicated a technical issue during the test. Due to the timely enquiry from the students, the issue was promptly resolved.  The students sent a letter asking to revoke the enquiry, since the problem was resolved. The academic office head apologised to the students for the confusion.

The Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods received an enquiry from a second-year master’s student in ‘Philology’ with a complaint on taking the test with the use of invigilating. 

Following the enquiry, an investigation revealed that during the tests in online courses on ‘Business Administration’ on 27 April 2021 and ‘Theory and Practice of Countering Corrupt Behaviour and Manifestations of Extremism’ on 28 April 2021, the invigilator of the company providing invigilating services to the University found violations of the final assessment procedure. Namely, the room during the test on 27 April 2021 was dark, which prevented from determining the direction of the gaze due to a shadow on the face and from identifying the personality (the passport picture was not clearly seen). During the test on 28 April 2021, the student systematically looked down.

However, it has been mentioned many times in replies to similar enquiries and in the minutes of the Rector's meetings that the information and instructions on computer settings and work place conditions is sent to the students no later than one day before taking the final test in an online course as well as immediately before the start of the final test in an online course. In this notification, the student should read and agree to the rules of the final test with the use of invigilating on the starting page. Additionally, the rules of taking the test with the use of invigilating are published on the ‘Open Education’ platform.

Thus, in order to take the test or examination following an online course in the relevant digital platform, the student should become familiar with the rules of final assessment in an online course with the use of invigilating, can check the condition of the equipment and perform a trial by connecting in advance. Moreover, during the final assessment the student should complete the requirements of the test procedure. In the absence of the required equipment, the student can take the test in an online format using the equipment in the University classrooms.

We emphasise once again that in order to pass final tests, students should perform the test tasks in an honest manner, observe the technical conditions and exclude cheating.

After 24 May 2021, the students of the four groups in the field of ‘History’ forwarded a request to change the classroom format of taking the summer interim assessment in the academic year of 2020/2021 to the format with the use of information and communication technology.

The majority of examinations of the summer interim assessment in the 2020/2021 academic year in the listed groups will take place in a distant format. The enquiries were considered. Abdulla Daudov, Director of the Institute of History, suggested that the request shall be fulfilled by changing the format of the interim assessment. The format was changed.

On 24 May 2021, the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods received an enquiry from the research supervisor of a bachelor’s student in Philosophy. The teacher was promptly given access to the MS Teams meeting, where the student's defence took place on 26 April 2021. When holding graduation project defences in a distant format, research supervisors and reviewers attend the online defence procedure. Remote defences are moderated by coordinators in the information system.

According to the majority of the academic subdivision heads, the end of the term including the remaining classes, tests, interim assessment shall be held in the prescribed form with the use of information and communication means or in a hybrid mode pursuant to the timetable. 

On 14 May 2021, several teachers of law noticed a failure in the electronic timetable work, when the workshops disappeared from it.  Due to the timely enquiry, the situation was promptly resolved.  Indeed, on 14 May 2021, there was a technical failure in the ‘Electronic Timetable’ information system. The issue was addressed by the University Information Technology Service and on 15 May 2021, normal operation was resumed.

Several students in Economics inquired about the state final assessment reporting that not all materials and answers were saved in the Blackboard system. The problem occurred due to incorrect use of the text editor and the browser. Technical support specialists commented on the issue and the students were able to pass the exam. No appeals were forwarded.  

The Dean of the School of International Relations received several letters via the chat in MS Teams from first-year bachelor's students inquiring about the access to the final test on the recommended St Petersburg University online course ‘General History. Part 2’ published on the ‘Open Education’ platform. The access to the final test was provided in a timely manner. However, the information on the preliminary results from invigilators reached the students’ corporate e-mails before reaching the Academic Affairs Department. Because of that, some students started to send enquiries before receiving the information on the test results.

A similar situation was considered at the previous Rector's meeting (Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 17 May 2021). Currently, similar interim notifications from the proctoring system that provide no information on passing or failing the test shall not be sent to St Petersburg University students.  The information on the test results shall be published by the Academic Affairs Department specialists after the revision of all data in the electronic student’s record book in their personal account.

The Dean of the Faculty of International Relations also received an e-mail from a first-year bachelor’s student inquiring about the conditions of getting a diploma with honours.  The Dean responded that the conditions of getting a diploma with honours are the same for all University students independent on the faculty, and suggested that the student read the answer to this question provided by Vice-Rector Marina Lavrikova dated 11 August 2020 in the University Virtual Reception (The terms of issuing a diploma with honours).

According to the Director of the Institute of Earth Sciences, the students of the last year of studies send questions to the coordinators of the State Assessment Committee that the latter are unable to answer. It was emphasised that the questions on conducting state final assessment as well as other academic questions should be directed to the heads of the academic offices and / or the Virtual Reception.

It was noted, that the preparation to the state final assessment was started in advance taking into account the continuing anti-epidemic measures. With the goal of holding state final assessment, by-laws have been issued at the University:

  • Order No 3777/1 dated 20 April 2021 ‘On organising state final assessment in 2021’ specifying the format (in person, hybrid or remote with the use of information and communication technologies) of holding state final assessment (graduation project defence and / or state examination) in the relevant disciplines;
  • Order No 4740/1 dated 11 May 2021 ‘On approving the order of holding state final assessment in 2021’ specifying the main requirements to the procedure and technical conditions for the state final assessment depending on the format.

The requirements to holding final state assessments in a traditional in-person format are provided by chapter 9 of the Academic Regulations on the full-time bachelor's, specialist, master's and vocational education programmes at St Petersburg University, so no additional regulation is needed.

To help all the participants in holding state examinations and graduation project defences with the use of information and communication technologies or in a hybrid mode a special working group including teachers and representatives of various University’s offices developed the instructions taking into account special features of the procedures and fields (written or oral examinations, remote or hybrid format, etc.) on the basis of by-laws and the above-mentioned Regulations. The state final assessment participants including students, chairs and state assessment committee members were forwarded the instructions on holding a state final assessment.

Before the state final assessments, the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs and Teaching Methods and the members of the working group on developing the state final assessment regulations held a briefing with the heads of the academic subdivisions and a separate meeting / webinar with the state assessment committee members. During the meeting, detail explanations on the state final assessment procedure were given. All the arising questions on the procedure were addressed.

At the stage of preparing state final assessment and elaborating the regulations during the first test scenarios with a remote format of holding examinations and project defences, the team identified various technical conditions that helped to reveal multiple issues that the students and state assessment committee members can encounter. Relevant decisions were taken in order to improve the developed documentation. The procedures cover the requirement of providing for sustainability, controlled conditions, independence and accessibility of the systems for all participants.

In order to check the possibilities of conducting the assessment, adapting to the work with the use of information and communication technologies, as well as solving organisational issues, the students were offered to attend test sessions of connecting to the proctoring system (used during the remote format of holding written computer-based state examinations) and provided with a 24hours access to the ServiceDesk, a special service providing consultations and helping with individual settings of the equipment. The state final assessment coordinators also provide continuous support during the final assessment process via MS Teams.

From 17 to 27 May, 528 bachelor’s and master's students held their graduation project defences:

Field

Bachelor's

programme

Master's

programme

Total

Journalism            and

Mass

     

Communication

 

90

46

136

Earth Sciences

 

18

60

78

History

 

-

15

15

Mathematics and Mechanics

 

37

16

53

Control Processes

 

-

44

44

Sociology

 

-

9

9

Philosophy

 

28

-

28

Economics

 

47

118

165

Total

 

220

308

528

The Session of 68 State Assessment Committees (SAC) took place during the graduation project defences.

Field

The number of SAC

Journalism and Mass Communications

14

Earth Sciences

14

History

2

Mathematics and Mechanics

10

Control Processes

7

Sociology

1

Philosophy

4

Economics

16

Total

68

From 528 graduation project defences, 360 people (68.2 %) were graded as ‘excellent’, 137 people (25.9 %) – ‘good’, 30 people (5.7 %) – ‘satisfactory’, and one person (0.2 %) – ‘unsatisfactory’.  

Field

Unsatisfactory

Satisfactory

Good

Excellent

Total

 

Bachelor’ s

programme

Master’s

programme

Bachelor’ s

programme

Master’s

programme

Bachelor’ s

programme

Master’s

programme

Bachelor’ s

programme

Master’s

programme

 

Journal ism and Mass

Comm unicati ons

-

-

8

5

19

18

63

23

136

Earth Science s

-

-

3

3

2

12

13

45

78

History

-

1

-

1

-

3

-

10

15

Mathe

matics and Mecha

nics

-

-

1

-

5

2

31

14

53

Control Process es

-

-

-

3

-

7

-

34

44

Sociolo gy

-

-

-

-

-

4

-

5

9

Philoso phy

-

-

1

-

6

-

21

-

28

Econo mics

-

-

2

3

19

40

26

75

165

 

1

 

30

 

137

 

360

 

528

From 17 to 27 May, state examinations were held for the students of the following fields:

  • Bachelor’s programmes in the field of ‘Economics’, ‘Law’, ‘International Relations’, ‘Psychology’, ‘Liberal Arts and Sciences’
  • Master's programmes in the field of ‘Political Science’, ‘Geography’, ‘Psychology’, ‘Law’

The students forwarded 32 claims to the appeal committees following the results of the state examinations:   4 – from the bachelor’s students in the field of ‘Economics’, 2 – from the bachelor’s students in the field of ‘International Relations’, 18 – from the master’s students in the field of ‘Law’ and 8 – from the students in the field of ‘Psychology’. The appeals are being considered.

The directors and deans have provided reports on holding meetings with the representatives of the student community. The issues of organising interim and final assessment and the teaching and learning process organisation at the end of May were discussed.

During the meeting of the Dean of the Faculty of Sociology with the Student Council, the students said that the timetable did not specify the dates of holding final tests in the ‘Digital culture’ online course (first year) and the ‘Fundamentals of Counter-Terrorist and Counter-Extremist Activities’ online course (second year).  The Dean responded that the timetable of the final testing will be communicated to the students on 27 May 2021. The tests have been set and published in the Electronic Timetable: ‘Digital culture’ on 10 and 18 June, ‘Fundamentals of Counter-Terrorist and Counter-Extremist Activities’ on 11 and 22 June.

The Dean also pointed at preventive measures when conducting the graduation project defence in a hybrid mode:

  • The students that take part in the in-person defence of the graduation project are divided into groups of no more than 10 people, so that the number of students in the classroom during the defence should not exceed 10 people.
  • The largest classrooms are allocated for the graduation project defence: No 304 and No 329. Classroom No 324 is additionally provided on one of the days. The size of the classrooms allows for the required social distancing.
  • All participants of the defence procedure including students and state assessment committee members should wear masks.
  • The academic office specialists shall control the compliance with the preventive measures.

During the meeting with the Director of the Institute of Philosophy with the Student Council, the students asked about the solution of technical issues arising when uploading term papers to the Blackboard system. It was clarified that the teachers create a relevant ‘course’ in the Blackboard system available to the academic group with an option of uploading files. An academic office specialist can give the last name and contact details of the relevant teacher in each field and course.

In the course of the meeting of the Acting Dean of the Faculty of Philology with the representatives of Student Council of the Faculty and fourth-year bachelor’s students, the participants discussed the issue of taking the test in the ‘Fundamentals of Life Safety’ online course with the use of invigilating system. The students submitted a written note asking about the test results to Natalya Boyko, Head of the Academic Affairs Department.

An inspection was conducted based on this and other enquiries. It was found that when holding the final test in the ‘Fundamentals of Life Safety’ online course, negative conclusions from invigilators became more frequent. The situation was analysed in order to find the reasons.  It was found on the recordings that the students systematically looked away during the test and often looked at their smartphones with the previously copied answers to the test questions.

The group of teachers headed by Igor Svitnev updated the final test bank of questions on the online course. The new tasks correspond to the topics included into the online course on the discipline and into the additional materials to the online course. Additionally, based on the results of the enquiries, Igor Svitnev consulted the students in Philology on the answers to the questions about the online course materials.

Similar issues were already discussed at the previous Rector’s meeting on 17 May 2021 (Minutes of the Rector’s meeting dated 17 May 2021). It was reminded one more time that the system of student identification and final test procedure monitoring (invigilating) is aimed at preventing the students from taking advantage of the situation and cheating during the online test format outside the controlled classroom environment of the University.

The violations found during the assessment of the online course test videos by professional invigilators (as part of the relevant service provided to St Petersburg University) can serve as the basis for a negative status of invigilating. When watching the video of the test, the invigilator checks on the protocol procedure and gives an overall assessment of the student’s actions that may point at cheating.

In case of technical issues, the students can promptly write to the technical support email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Moreover, in case of the equipment availability problems or technical failures related to taking the test in any online course on the curriculum, the students can turn to the academic office specialists in their field of study in order to take the interim assessment in the equipped computer classrooms of the University.

10.  The enquiry from a student of St Petersburg University

A student of St Petersburg University has filed a complaint on the teachers and expressed her claims on the master's programme quality.  Following the student’s enquiry, Deputy Rector for Security Elena Sharygina sent a relevant claim to the law enforcement authorities. An internal investigation is conducted based on the student’s complaint.

11.  The hybrid format of the graduation ceremonies

The graduation ceremonies in 2021 will be held in a hybrid format in the Assembly Hall of the

Twelve Collegia Building with the observation of epidemiological rules and recommendations of Rospotrebnadzor on the prevention of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

For the purpose of holding the grand ceremony of delivering the diplomas, the hall will be decorated; the required lighting equipment will be mounted; professional video recording from multiple angles and broadcast on the University portal will be organised; and a possibility to take pictures of graduates outside will be provided. The gowns and graduation caps will not be used due to the sanitary and epidemiological restrictions. It is planned to hold a graduation ceremony only for the graduates of one field of study at a time. 

The decision on the number of graduates that can take part in the grand ceremony in person will be taken based on the current epidemiological situation in St Petersburg and the current restrictions on the number of participants in the public events taking into account the recommendations of a local Rospotrebnadzor office and regional authorities. 

In case of a favourable epidemiological situation, graduation ceremonies will consist of two parts. During the first part, the diplomas will be delivered to the honours graduates with the participation of the directors of institutes and deans of faculties (or their authorised representatives) and a limited number of invited teachers and distinguished guests. The ceremony will be broadcast on the St Petersburg University portal with open access. During the second part, the diplomas will be delivered to the graduates that have previously registered for the ceremony based on the previously provided schedule. The graduates without accompanying persons enter the Assembly Hall one by one, receive the diploma from the director of the institute, dean of the faculty or their authorised representatives and will have a possibility to take a picture with the diploma on the stage. 

The students that have no possibility to take part in the ceremony in person will be able to watch the broadcast on the St Petersburg University portal and receive their diploma from the academic office specialists later.

In case of unfavourable epidemiological situation, the first part of the ceremony will be held in a distant format with the use of information and communication technologies. The deans of faculties and directors of institutes or their authorised representatives will give speeches in the Assembly Hall, which will be broadcast on the St Petersburg University portal. After the grand speeches and parting words, the second part of the ceremony will be held. The diplomas will be delivered one by one to the graduates previously registered for the ceremony in the Assembly Hall based on the previously provided schedule.

Final scenarios of the ceremony for each of the fields of study will be created in accordance with the traditions established in the relevant academic circles. The information will be communicated in due order to the graduates of 2021 and published on the University portal.

12.  The ‘Priority-2030’ programme

Governmental Order of the Russian Federation No 729 dated 13 May 2021 ‘On the measures of implementing the programme of strategic academic leadership “Priority-2030”’’ the following rules and regulations have been approved:

  • the rules of selecting the universities and university programmes to be supported by the ‘Priority-2030’ programme;
  • the rules of providing grants in the form of subsidies from the federal budget to support university development programmes.

The grant includes the following:

  1. the basic part for the increase of the university input into the social and economic development of the Russian Federation subjects and the implementation of creative, social and humanitarian projects; the minimal amount of the grant basic part is 100 million roubles per year; the maximal amount is annually determined by the committee
  2. the special part:
    • for the development of the universities providing for breakthrough research and creation of science-driven production and technologies, increasing the HR potential of the R&D sector;
    • for the development of the universities providing for social and economic development of the territories, strengthening the HR and R&D potential of the organisations in the real economic sector and real sphere.

Selection of universities for one of the grant special parts is performed in two fields:

  • research leadership – performing breakthrough research and creating sciencedriven products, increasing HR potential;
  • territorial and / or industrial leadership – social and economic development of the territory.

The ‘Priority 2030’ programme is aimed at large-scale support of industry-specific and regional universities with the strategic plans seeking: to reach national goals of the development of Russia till 2030; balanced geographical development of the country; and high-quality university education in the regions. St Petersburg University is not planning to apply for the competitive selection to receive the grant.

At the same time, according to paragraph 6 of the Grant Provision Rules, the universities receiving grants are entitled to later give the specified funds to other legal entities participating in the consortium formed pursuant to paragraph 7 of the selection rules. Currently, there is a discussion about the possibility to become a part of the consortia headed by regional partner organisations, so that St Petersburg University can take part in the ‘Priority-2030’ programme.

St Petersburg University has experience in creation and successful implementation of its own strategic plans and network cooperation programmes. The University is also implementing the project on creating the ‘Mendeleev’ research and educational cluster with the goal of creating network partnership with the universities from other regions. This will enable partner universities to use the infrastructure, high-technology resources and intellectual potential of the University also for the purpose of increasing the quality of their R&D potential and training highly qualified specialists for their regions.

St Petersburg University as a coordinator of the ‘Mendeleev’ research and educational cluster performs methodological, organisational, expert, analytical and information support of the programme activities. The cluster participants are provided access to unique human, infrastructure and technical resources of the University on the basis of partnership agreements.  

13.        Applications of the competition participants seeking academic and teaching staff positions

Applications of the competition participants seeking academic and teaching staff positions were considered: on the transfer of the issue to the meeting of the Academic Council of St Petersburg U; on the term of the labour agreement; and on concluding the agreement on scientific cooperation.

One of the participants of the competitive selection for the position of an associate professor sent a request to take the final decision about the competition winner during the meeting of the Academic Council of St Petersburg University. At the same time, the request was sent already after the meeting of the Academic Council of the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science, where the decision about the winner had already been taken.  It is clear that satisfying the submitted request will result not only in changing the procedure, which is acceptable according to the Regulation on taking the research and academic staff positions at the University, but in cancellation of the legitimate decision taken by the Academic Council of the Faculty, which is unacceptable (The transfer of the voting procedure to select candidates seeking academic staff positions to the meeting of the Academic Council of St Petersburg University).

An enquiry from the winner of the competition to take professor's position was sent to the Virtual Reception. The applicant is inquiring about the reasons of concluding an additional agreement to the labour contract for one year. It was clarified that the labour contract term is determined pursuant to the results of completing the previous labour contract. When taking part in the competition in 2019, a labour contract for the term of two years was concluded with the teacher. At the same time, the analysis of the teacher’s work has shown that instead of four articles indexed in WoS CC and Scopus bases, only three articles were published. In this regard, the term of the renewed labour contract has been reduced to one year.

One of the professors-historians, a participant of an alternative competition for a professor's position, sent a letter with a conclusion about the lack of prospect of being selected during the St Petersburg University Academic Council meeting, based on the results of voting at the meeting of the Personnel assessment committee that unanimously declined his candidacy and based on the results of voting at the meeting of the Academic Council of the Institute of History (for – 1, against – 12). At the same time, if the Academic Council takes a negative decision and the labour contract with the professor is terminated on 30 June 2021, then (taking into account his public activity and his work on the book about the repressed historians of Leningrad State University), a possibility of concluding a scientific cooperation agreement can be considered, when under certain circumstances the professor will be able to use the library and keep the access to electronic resources, etc. (Where do they go after leaving the academic staff positions?).

14.  The disappearance of a student

On 20 May, some students addressed the supervisor of one of the halls of residence with a concern that their friend had left the hall of residence early in the morning and stopped responding since then.  The officers of the Department of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs in the Petrodvortsovy District of St Petersburg were immediately summoned to the hall of residence. Unfortunately, there has been no information on the location of the student up to the present moment.

Documents

FILES

Minutes of the Rector's Meeting dated 31 May 2021. ‘Digital Portfolio’ Presentation.pdf

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 2 August 2021

  1. Admissions processes
  2. Amending the Rules and regulations for defending dissertations to gain a degree of candidate of sciences and doctor of sciences approved by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Russia
  3. Measures to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infection (COVID19) at St Petersburg University
  4. Inspection by the Prosecutor's Office upon revealing educational documents and other materials from Bard College in St Petersburg University
  5. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  6. Admission of the Alumni Association's members to St Petersburg University
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 5 Jule 2021

  1. Changes introduced into the Federal Law ‘On Lomonosov Moscow State University and St Petersburg University’
  2. Decisions on Human Resources
  3. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  4. On accommodating students in the halls of residence
  5. St Petersburg University visited by the winners and laureates of the all-Russia Olympiads among school students seeking to be enrolled into the bachelor’s programmes in mathematics and computer science
  6. The number of the University projects supported by the Russian Science Foundation
  7. Digital profiles of research and teaching staff
  8. Preliminary results of the assessment
  9. The results of work dedicated to the perpetuation of the memory of Lyudmila Verbitskaya
  10. Organising medical check-ups for students
  11. The response of the Office of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation to the enquiry from St Petersburg University
  12. Observing the face mask mandate by the students
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 15 June 2021

  1. Valerii Zapasskii, a scientist of St Petersburg University – laureate of the Russian Federation National Award
  2. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  3. Using the results of The Three University Missions ranking
  4. Taking into account the data of the World University Ranking (U.S. News Best Global Universities)
  5. A series of webinars for teachers of the Leningrad region
  6. Medals of the Russian Academy of Sciences – for young scientists of St Petersburg University
  7. Compensation of expenses for the publication of scientific articles
  8. Violations committed by students of St Petersburg University
  9. Tuition fees at St Petersburg University
  10. Termination of the contract between St Petersburg University and the Alumni Association
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 8 June 2021

  1. St Petersburg University scientists received Golitsyn Prize of the Russian Academy of Sciences
  2. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  3. Events on the margins of the St Petersburg International Economic Forum
  4. St Petersburg University is the best university in Russia in terms of financial management quality
  5. Strategic session devoted to the creation of world-class campuses
  6. The issues related to the University’s Strategic Plan have been clarified
  7. The cooperation between St Petersburg University and Lomonosov Moscow State University in the field of distance learning
  8. Who will receive the scholarships of the Russian Federation Government?
  9. The achievements of St Petersburg University students in the field of sport
  10. The St Petersburg University Collegium of Honorary Professors discussed the activity of the Alumni Association
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 31 May 2021

  1. Professor Petr Iablonskii is awarded the title of Honorary Citizen of St Petersburg
  2. The award named after Professor Vataniar Yagya is established
  3. St Petersburg University staff receiving the Prizes of the Government of St Petersburg
  4. St Petersburg University scientists in ‘The New Knowledge’ marathon
  5. ‘The Architecture of the Siege’ – the best documentary
  6. The use of digital portfolio in the system of general education
  7. The events within the framework of the Korea–Russia Dialogue
  8. St Petersburg University Agreement with Iranian partners
  9. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  10. The enquiry from a student of St Petersburg University
  11. The hybrid format of the graduation ceremonies
  12. The ‘Priority-2030’ programme
  13. Applications of the competition participants seeking academic and teaching staff positions
  14. The disappearance of a student
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 17 May 2021

  1. A session of Petersburger Dialogue Coordinating Committees
  2. St Petersburg University Strategic Plan indicators
  3. Monument to COVID-19 victims
  4. The Office of RF Prosecutor General and Bard College (USA)
  5. Restructuring the St Petersburg University Research Support Service
  6. Organisation of theses defences
  7. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 11 May 2021

  1. Aleksandr Zagoskin, Associate Professor at St Petersburg University, is the winner of the Nika Film Award
  2. Meeting of the St Petersburg University Board of Trustees
  3. Cooperation Agreement between St Petersburg University and Sberbank
  4. St Petersburg University Strategic Plan until 2030 Approved
  5. Current issues related to the organisation of the teaching and learning process
  6. St Petersburg University online school
  7. Personnel competition to accompany a world-class international centre
  8. Accessibility of the St Petersburg University portal for people with special health needs
Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 12 April 2021

  1. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  2. Round-table discussion ’Problems of formation and fixation of student electronic portfolio of individual achievements’
  3. The procedure for the entry of international students into the Russian Federation for study purposes has been established
  4. Competition for the position of Deputy Head of the Auditing Department
  5. Merging of the University’s Palaeontology Museum and Palaeontological and Stratigraphic Museum
  6. Separate waste collection at the University
  7. ’Vestnik of St Petersburg University. Law’ registered with the Scopus Science Metrix database
  8. Damage done by students to the University property
  9. Dissemination of information on the activities of the University scientists in the media
  Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 5 April 2021

  1. Kirill Chistiakov has been awarded the title of ‘Honoured Geographer of the Russian Federation’
  2. The Government of St Petersburg Official Award named after Gennady Leonov
  3. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  4. Participation of students in the project on Monitoring Law Enforcement
  5. Organising access to the resources of the Research Park
  6. ‘St Petersburg University Journal of Economic Studies’ (SUJES) has been included into Scopus database
  7. The Prize of Elsevier company
  8. The results of the joint competition of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) and the Iran National Science Foundation (INSF)
  9. Interaction of the University with Iranian partners
  10. The installation of a memorial plate to Vladimir Mavrodin
  11. The status of the reorganisation of St Petersburg University
  Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 29 March 2021

  1. Operation of the St Petersburg University Centre for Financial Literacy in 2020
  2. Professor Detlef Bahnemann is elected to the European Academy of Sciences
  3. How laboratory data sheets work
  4. Dmitri Mendeleev and St Petersburg University
  5. Current issues with organising the teaching and learning process
  6. Questions about the reorganisation of St Petersburg University
  7. Arbitration Court sustains St Petersburg University’s claim against the Territorial Fund for Compulsory Medical Insurance
  Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 22 March 2021

  1. Current issues of organising the teaching and learning process
  2. Format of the teaching and learning process from1 April 2021
  3. List of the planned indicators of the internal assessment of the academic programmes
  4. Organising work with the online courses
  5. Applying for scholarships
  6. Strategy for the digital transformation of the University: drafting the event programme
  7. New duties of the University Academic Board
  8. Classroom-based studies delivered by academic staff who are 65 or older
  9. Enquiries submitted to be discussed by the working group formed in relation to the reorganisation of the University
  10. Vaccination of international citizens
Read more ...

A brief report of the Rector’s Meeting dated 15 March

1. Current issues related to organisation of the teaching and learning process

Last week, the Virtual Reception received 21 enquiries from students and teachers addressed to the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods. These included 7 enquires on teaching and methodology. 11 enquiries were sent to the email of the Vice-Rector. They exclude the enquiries on the University reorganisation (see paragraph 2 below). The most urgent issues were addressed in detail. They will be published in the full report of the Rector’s Meeting.

Read more ...

A brief report of the Rector’s Meeting dated 10 March 2021

The participants of the meeting observed a moment of silence in memory of the University Professor Emeritus Evgeny Veremey.

1. Current issues related to organisation of the teaching and learning process

Last week, the Virtual Reception received 45 enquiries from students and teachers addressed to the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods. Nine enquiries were sent to the e-mail of the Vice-Rector. The most urgent issues were addressed in detail. They will be published in the full report of the Rector’s Meeting.

Read more ...

A brief report of the Rector’s Meeting dated 20 February 2021

1. The format of training sessions from 1 March 2021

The Rector’s meeting addressed the proposals of the heads of academic and research departments on the format of training sessions from 1 March 2021. The following decisions were made taking into account the experience of organising the teaching and learning process with the use of information and communication technologies and the need to comply with the Recommendations for the prevention of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in educational institutions of higher education, approved by the Chief State Sanitary Doctor of the Russian Federation on 29 July 2020.

Read more ...

A brief report of the Rector’s Meeting dated 22 January 2021

1. Current issues with organising the academic process

Last week, the Virtual Reception received 35 enquiries from students and teachers including 23 enquiries on academic issues addressed to the Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods. Seven enquiries were sent to the e-mail of the Vice-Rector. The most urgent issues were addressed in detail. They will be published in the full report of the Rector’s Meeting (The quality of the heating system in hall of residence No 18;St Petersburg University branch in Tashkent;Competition for funding to cover participation in student olympiads, intellectual contests, conferences and other scientific events in 2021;  Imposing disciplinary liability).

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 14 December 2020

1. St Petersburg University is a co-founder and the sole Russian representative in the Global Alliance of Massive Open Online Courses

The Global MOOC Alliance is a non-commercial partnership of higher educational institutions, online educational platforms and international non-profit organisations initiated by the UNESCO Institute for Information Technology in Education (UNESCO IITE) and Tsinghua University (PRC). Its creation was officially announced in Beijing at the global online conference ‘Learning Revolution and Higher Education Transformation’, which took place on 9-11 December 2020. St Petersburg University’s participation in the founding of the Global MOOC Alliance is a great honour and gives us worldwide recognition in the field of online education.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 7 December 2020

As proposed by the Rector, the meeting began with a moment of silence in memory of Professor Igor Froyanov.

1. About a meeting with Dmitry Chernyshenko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation

On 2 December, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko met with the heads of the following organisations, all of which fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government: Moscow State University, St Petersburg University, Kurchatov Institute, the Higher School of Economics, the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, and the University of Economics. St Petersburg University Rector Nikolay Kropachev and Vice-Rector for Research Sergey Mikushev participated in the meeting, during which the work of the Situation Centre of the Government of the Russian Federation and new approaches to contemporary digital management were demonstrated. Two lines of development were highlighted in the work of the Centre: teams of professionals, ad hoc groups of experts and government officials, who are engaged in dealing with particular tasks, and an approach to work predicated on the principle of co-working.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector’s Meeting dated 30 November 2020

1. The Second International Congress of the Russian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science

On 27-29 November, the Second International Congress of the Russian Society for History and Philosophy of Science was held at St Petersburg University. The main areas of history and the philosophy of science that are presented in Russia were considered, as were new, emerging areas of research that are just beginning to develop in our country. Emphasis was placed on a discussion of issues involving the interplay between philosophical, academic and technological research and society from both contemporary and historical perspectives. These included the relationship between the goals of academic activity and significant public objectives, the place of scholarly expertise in relevant public discussions and the ability of scholarship to meet the fundamental challenges of our time. More than 400 Russian and over 50 foreign scholars (from such countries as the United States, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France and Germany) took part in 14 panel discussions and 9 roundtables.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's meeting dated 23 November 2020

1. Events held in the memory of Lyudmila Verbitskaya

St Petersburg University held the International Philological Conference in Memory of Professor Lyudmila Verbitskaya from 26 to 24 November 2020 (St Petersburg University opened a free open access to a book Let’s talk correctly! by Lyudmila Verbitskaya). The conference brought together over 1,100 scholars and researchers. This is twice more than last year as the conference was held in a distance mode.

Read more ...

Minutes of the Rector's Meeting dated 16 November 2020

1. Organisation of teaching and learning

Last week, 73 enquiries from teachers as well as students and their parents, including 31 enquiries on academic issues, were sent to the Virtual Reception. 21 enquiries were sent to the email of Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods, including 19 enquiries on academic issues. The enquiries included requests for certificates and document copies, and questions on student residence and information systems’ work.

Read more ...